Louise's Reviews > For Laci: A Mother's Story of Love, Loss, and Justice

For Laci by Sharon Rocha
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Apr 10, 09

bookshelves: non-fiction
Read in April, 2006

A beautiful touching tribute to her murdered daughter Laci, Sharon Rocha lived through every mother's worst nightmare. Written without gore or details of the murder itself, but rather a clear and concise sharing of information and openness for us as readers to see and enjoy Laci as her family had for twenty-seven-years.

Laci Peterson was a vivacious, upbeat, happy girl who had a smile that the whole world will never forget. On Christmas Eve, 2002 Laci's mother, Sharon Rocha, received a phone call from Laci's husband Scott Peterson. Scott was inquiring as to whether Laci was at her mother's home as she appeared to be "missing".

When Laci disappeared she was eight and a half months pregnant with her first child; a son that Scott and Laci had named Conner. Laci was excited about having her first child and often shared her feelings about the impending birth with her mother and her close friends. Everyone also believed that Scott was just as happy at the prospect of becoming a father for the first time. No one really knew how untrue that assumption of belief was.

As this touching story made it's way around the world, through the media we came to learn that Scott had been dating another woman by the name of Amber Frey whom Scott told he was 'unmarried'. The shock and distrust that Laci's family began to feel toward Scott as the case moved forward, were feelings they never dreamed they'd have to deal with. Did our son-in-law actually murder our daughter?

Thousands of people turned up to help Laci's family find her. Massive search parties were sent out in teams to cover the same ground again and again and again. Scott participated in these searches, gave an interview on national television with Diane Sawyer which was aired on January 28th, about his crushing loss over his missing wife. He played the part of the grieving husband quite well.

Unfortunately, the bodies of Laci and her baby son Conner were found, washed up ashore on April 13th and 14th, 2003 near where Scott claimed to have been fishing around the time of Laci's disappearance.

Scott Peterson was eventually arrested on April 18th at the Torrey Pines Golf Course, in La Jolla, California and charged with the murders of his wife Laci and their unborn son Conner.

Not only did Sharon Rocha and her family have to live through the nightmare of their daughter missing and then found murdered, but they also had to endure the anguish of a preliminary hearing and then a trial. On November 18th, 2003, following an eleven-day preliminary hearing, Scott Peterson was ordered to stand trial for the murders of his wife and unborn child. After twenty-three weeks of testimony and 184 witnesses, Scott Peterson was found guilty and sentenced on December 13, 2004 to death.

Sharon Rocha goes far beyond previous accounts to tell this story with unprecedented immediacy and intimacy. Included are Sharon's private conversations with police investigators and with Amber Frey.

As a mother myself, I cannot begin to even imagine what it would be like to live through the murder of your child - Sharon's feelings of loss as recorded in her Victim's Impact Statement - "her beautiful smile, her contagious giggle, her happy heart, her love of life, her great expectations of becoming a mother, her generous soul, her knowing how much I love her, and my knowing how much she loves me", are words I hope Laci can hear. Laci's family will never forget and for Sharon Rocha, she will forever be left with a huge hole in her heart.

This was a powerful and deeply touching memoir of loss and love.

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